We tend to think of “Informed Consent” as having the patient sign a form prior to performing surgery in the OR. This may be misleading, however, from several perspectives.
Handoffs are a necessary part of patient care. These transfers of information, authority and responsibility occur whenever a provider changes, when a patient is transferred from one unit to another, before and after a procedure, and at admission and discharge.
As reimbursement models shift away from fee-for-service, physicians and hospitals are being faced with the need to increase patient engagement and patient satisfaction. Patients want to become more active participants in their healthcare, but often there is no clear plan on how to engage them. Many physicians may be unsure of how to proceed. At MagMutual we know that improved communication between the physician and patient will help to eliminate the possibility of future claims. The MagMutual Patient Safety Institute’s analysis of five year closed claims data revealed 20% of our claims can be directly tied to a breakdown in communication.
Employers will face a number of new obligations under OSHA’s revised recordkeeping rules as of August 10, 2016. These include (1) a new anti-retaliation provision; (2) new employee notification requirements; and (3) a new requirement to implement and maintain a “reasonable” injury and illness reporting procedure. For employers required to record injuries and illnesses under OSHA’s Recordkeeping Standard, the new rules may require some immediate action.
Candida auris, multidrug-resistant (MDR) yeast, has been causing invasive healthcare associated infections with high mortality in nine countries on four continents since 2009. The CDC, concerned with its potential to emerge in the United States, is alerting U.S. healthcare facilities to be on the lookout for C. auris in patients, particularly those most susceptible to yeast infections. The precise mode of transmission within the healthcare facility is not known; however, experience during these outbreaks suggests that C. auris might contaminate the environment of rooms of colonized or infected patients. Evidenced-based infection control practices and environmental cleaning may help prevent transmission.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) final rule amends the fire safety standards for Medicare and Medicaid participating hospitals, critical access hospitals (CAHs), long-term care facilities, intermediate care facilities for individuals with intellectual disabilities (ICF-IID), ambulatory surgery centers (ASCs), hospices which provide inpatient services, religious non-medical health care institutions (RNHCIs), and programs of all-inclusive care for the elderly (PACE) facilities.
More and more cyber criminals are targeting the healthcare industry and its important to stay aware and take actions to protect yourself. The Internet Crime Complaint Center of the Federal Bureau of Investigation issued an alert on extortion schemes that relate to recent high-profile data thefts. Fraudsters often use the news release of high-profile data breaches to scare victims into clicking on a link received via an e-mail alert.
Chaperones and their use in the healthcare environment is a delicate issue. Many patients may feel more comfortable during a physical examination if there is a chaperone present. Physicians must balance the patients’ need for privacy with their requirement to maintain professional boundaries in their interactions with patients.
All healthcare organizations, small or large are particularly vulnerable to cyber attacks. Reports of breaches against healthcare organizations continue to rise—as do the regulatory fines they face when protected patient data is exposed. The SANS Institute, a cooperative research and education organization published a white paper titled Health Care Cyberthreat Report detailing findings from a three-month study of medical institutions and healthcare providers whose data was hacked.